Saturday, January 23, 2021

PSUC men’s success hinges on more goals

Starting off the season, having gone 3-2 the Plattsburgh state men’s soccer team has had a difficult time finding any momentum between games.

This past week, the PSUC team took on Hobart in a 1-0 losing effort. Hobart scored the lone goal of the game with six minutes left making it difficult for the Cardinals to make a comeback.

Sophomore defensemen Nick Economou said the team started off the first 10 to 20 minutes of the game well and controlled the ball. He said that he felt that Hobart was a different team then Norwich, a team they beat 2-0 the game before.

“They are both physical teams,” Economou said. “But I feel Hobart pressed us a lot more and just lacking concentration at the end lost us a goal.”

Head coach Chris Waterbury believes that the team played a good game but not sharp in the attacking third.

“We are just struggling to find out way in terms of being more effective in the attacking third,” Waterbury said. “Which is unfortunate because I thought we played well enough to win just couldn’t by a goal.”

Waterbury also said the spacing of his team was better and they were creating good opportunities, but the decisions that were made hurt them in the end.

Ian Spear, a freshman midfielder, agreed with Economou on the team starting the game strong.

“It looked like we had them where we wanted them and we were getting pretty good chances,” Spear said. “As the game went on Hobart got the feel of the game and they started playing the way they would like to play.”

Spear also agreed with Waterbury, echoing his feelings of controlling the game and creating opportunities, but not capitalizing on the opportunities.

During Wednesday’s game the team was able to play with more intensity.

They were able to come away with a 4-1 win against Castleton. Sophomore forward Alexis Archilla was able to score two goals in the win including an impressive bicycle kick.

“The first one I came in and had that little chip,” Archilla said. “The second one I had a brilliant opportunity and I have never scored a bicycle kick before so I thought, ‘Why not?’”

Waterbury said his team went into this game attacking the ball more.

“We focused on out-competing people,” he said. “Our hunger was a little bit better then we had in the past and I thought that was the tale of the game.”

Waterbury said one of the keys to the game was PSUC being able to come out and out-compete the opposition.

The next matchup for the Cards is against Union college Saturday at 1 p.m.

For the rest of the season, Spear, Waterbury and Economou all agree that the main thing that needs to change in the scoring done by the team.

Economou said the team is strong on defense right now, but they need to work on finishing on the opportunities that were presented throughout the first four games, with only two people scoring all four goals.

The PSUC team was able to score four goals in one game from three different people in Archilla, Economou and sophomore forward Chris Bowden with Bowden and Economou’s goals being the first of their college careers.

Spear said before the team’s 4-1 win over Castleton that the team is just not finishing right now and is finding trouble finding the net.

“When we start finding the net, our confidence will build and I feel like once we score a few more goals, guys are going to start putting the ball into the net,” Spear said. “That is going to help the whole team because right now our defense is really solid, we just can’t get the ball into the net.”

Archilla said the Cards need to make sure they are able to maintain possession throughout their games.

“I believe we can keep the ball more,” Archilla said. “Just creating opportunities and more goals are going to come with more chances.”

Waterbury said he is hoping the team can make a positive step forward in the coming games.

The last time the Cards faced Union they went into a double-overtime tie.

“Every game is a baby step forward,” Waterbury said.

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